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By Tom Meek | July 27, 1998

Call this one the “Stepford Kids.” It’s essentially a remake of the surprise 1975 hit “The Stepford Wives,” where a family running from a troubled past moves to a town where the citizens are a little too perfect. James Marsden is charismatic as the chiseled young hunk caught in the middle. He’s the new guy in town and things start to get weird when some of his new high school buddies start transforming from grunge rebels into mind controlled preppies who go nuts when they get “the urge.” Writer Scott Rosenberg (“Con Air” and “Things to do in Denver When Dead”) knows how to pen snappy dialogue, but when it comes to plot, he’s a Frankenstien surgeon, patching together cliche shreds of pop culture. At least the soundtrack’s hip and Marsden and Katie Holmes make a cute couple even if there’s more posturing than acting required.

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